Initial Therapy for Breast Cancer Influences Biopsy Rates During Follow-up, Study Shows

Initial Therapy for Breast Cancer Influences Biopsy Rates During Follow-up, Study Shows
Women with breast cancer who undergo breast-conserving surgery and a type of internal radiation therapy known as brachytherapy are more likely to require additional breast biopsies during their follow-up care, a nationwide study shows. However, the overall rates of biopsy were relatively low, and most patients will not need additional cancer treatment. The study, titled “Incidence and Outcome of Breast Biopsy Procedures During Follow-up After Treatment for Breast Cancer,” was published in the journal JAMA Surgery. The two main surgical options for the treatment of breast cancer are breast-conserving surgery (BCS) — the cancer is removed while leaving as much normal breast as possible — with radiation, or mastectomy. Previous studies have shown that these procedures have equivalent long-term survival rates. However, many patients choose to undergo mastectomy due to the fear of repeated breast biopsies during follow-up, and the possibility of another breast cancer diagnosis. Currently, data on the biopsy rates after BCS or mastectomy remains unclear. Using two national databases that included younger and older women with insurance, researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center investigated how often follow-up biopsies were performed in 121,879 breast canc
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